Sunday, January 24, 2010

Take the Last Train to Yorkville

I must have that kind of face. The kind of face that declares I know not only know how to work the subway, but am also willing to help the wayward find Ground Zero, Barney’s CoOp or the Met. Yesterday I was giving some lost Russians directions to the Ellis Island Ferry when a group of three women lined up in back of them. This whole every-time-I-go-uptown-somebody-asks-me-how-to-get-someplace has been going on for a while, but yesterday was the first time I’d ever earned myself a queue.

Somewhat inexplicable when considering my allure to lost tourists, is that I never ride the subway without music and big white earphones. This necessitates the tourists to get right up in my business and scream to get my attention. Additionally, I appear to be most attractive on my way back from a run around Central Park. My sweaty aroma must be a powerful pheromone for befuddled mainlanders.

Mostly I’m a sure thing when it comes to on-demand transit advice to Fodor's Top 5 Sights, but sometimes I get hit with a stumper. I hate it when I come up short. One time an English guy asked me how to get to the Brooklyn Navy Yard and I have no idea how to get to the Brooklyn Navy Yard. When I responded with a blank stare, the dude gave me this look, like I knew how to get to the Brooklyn Navy Yard but was holding out on him.

I should have put him on the 2 uptown to the Bronx.


Sunday, January 10, 2010

And the Funk Squirted Out at Authur's Tavern

After Swedish Club, which went down like an episode of Real World: I-had/have-a-Crush-on-a-Nordic-Hottie, Tom and I ate turnip stew. In the warm odoriferous root-vegetable aftermath, we decided to amble down to the West Village. The ambling part didn’t work out because it was so cold pee froze on the sidewalk in slippery little yellow circles. We took the A train to West 4th.

I couldn’t see where the bargirl with little stars tattooed on her face was taking us because my glasses were all steamed up. But after acclimating to the indoors environment, I was surprised to discover I was sitting on stage holding a broken microphone together while the guitar player duct-taped it into working order. Lucky for him, I spent my childhood assisting relentless duct-tapers hard at work on their shoes, rowboats, pants, wall joists and internal combustion engines. I was also instrumental in a project affixing 1/2 liters of grape juice to the inside of a closet.

The guitar player was strictly an amateur as far as duct-taping was concerned but more than a pro when it came to actually playing his guitar. He lit up the entire dingy dive bar with his lightening fingers-- and I know this indisputably because we were sitting so close I almost got smacked in the head with the guitar neck at least twice. Our seats were at a make-shift bar that completely penned in the band. All four guys were squeezed in the middle with their instruments like a Walmart shopper packed inside her lycra. But in this case, the funk was all good when it squirted out and exploded.